F.A.Q.s About Personal Property Appraisals:
- Who needs an appraisal?
- What types of appraisals should be considered?
- What should be expected from a full appraisal service?
- How is an appraisal performed?
- How do appraisers charge for their work?
- What can be done to help facilitate the appraiser and the costs?
"Not only do Tom and Ron exhibit a deep knowledge of every aspect of their field they are thorough and conscientious leaving no stone unturned in bringing the best service possible to their clients."
high school Principal, retired
Who needs an appraisal?
Appraisals are a necessity both personally and legally in today's complex and complicated world. The following is just a sample of situations that A-Z Appraisal handles in which an appraisal is necessary:
- settling estates for taxes, equitable distribution, or liquidation
- documenting donations for charities and IRS verification
- verifying values for scheduling replacement or loss for insurance
- valuing for property settlement due to divorce
- documenting support for trusts with a comprehensive inventory appraisal added to the trust
"Tom was everything I was told he would be. He handled the estate of my clients professionally, thoroughly, and respectfully. I wholeheartedly recommend the services of A-Z Appraisal and Estate Consultants."
educational consultant and retired attorney
What types of appraisals should be considered?
- Insurance appraisals: This appraisal will provide the necessary documentation to substantiate the existence, condition and replacement value of your belongings. It is wise to have an update done every five years or ahead of any pending household move.
- Estate appraisals: This appraisal is necessary for a taxable estate. It is necessary to efficiently catalogue the property providing an appraisal that meets IRS requirements, but without the level of detail normally provided for an insurance appraisal.
- Donation appraisals: This appraisal is suggested by the IRS to substantiate a tax deduction above a $1000.00; however, it is REQUIRED for anything above $5000 that has been given to a charitable institution. A-Z Appraisal's advice: when in doubt, appraise.
- Pre-move appraisals: Due to the limited level of protection for damage or loss provided by a moving company, this type of appraisal will provide an inventory of your high value items as it can substantiate both the higher value and their existence. It will help you to purchase the additional necessary insurance.
- Equitable distribution appraisal: This appraisal is used to help settle divorces or estates for fair distribution of property based on fair market value.
- Trust or will inventory appraisal: This appraisal should be attached to the document and a copy also be given to your trust attorney who will now have knowledge of your property and with your comments on the report, will know who is to inherit which item(s).
"Tom and Ron each have their own talents and as a team, they are truly the best."
artist and educator
What should be expected from a full appraisal service?
You should receive the services of an educated and nationally certified appraisal expert who will provide you with a formal written and descriptive report complete with photos which the appraiser should be willing to defend in court. If should include any limiting or qualifying conditions, the appraiser's qualifications, a complete and accurate description of the items, market analysis, markets selected and well-defined value conclusions.^Back to Top
How is an appraisal performed?
An appraisal is a FOUR step process:
1. THE EXAMINATION:
An A-Z appraiser will examine all the property to be included in the final report while noting and evaluating characteristics, condition, and measurements of most items.
2. THE PHOTOGRAPHS:
Digital images are taken to document the item's existence and aid in research. Photographs are included in the final report.
3. THE RESEARCH:
Values are based upon comparable sales and history for each item. Research time is the time taken to identify marks, labels, dates, locating and analyzing comparable items, investigating necessary markets and if necessary, consulting experts.
4. THE REPORT:
An A-Z Appraisal's final report consists of a bound copy of the completed appraisal along with the appraiser\s qualifications, purpose, and basis of appraisal. Also included in the document is the inventory, market research, valuation, and necessary comments pertinent to the property. Each item or group of items will have a description, age if appropriate, measurements, condition, value and digital photograph. The report is compliant with the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice
"With his expertise and knowledge, Tom can honestly and forthrightly appraise full estates, antiques, and objet d'arts. he is straightfoward and easy to work with."
Dr. Rimma Finkel,
How do appraisers charge for their work?
A-Z Appraisal fees are competitive with today's market. They are based on the time necessary to complete the appraisal and to our prevailing hourly rate of $150.00 an hour for each appraiser assigned to the project. There is a one time charge of $285.00 for the report which includes two copies. There is a $325.00 minimum fee for a one hour appraisal and report depending on distance and complexity of the item(s). We have no "hidden fees" nor do we charge a commission on our other services We also do estate evaluation documentation analysis reports for smaller estates that is less and might fit in with your needs and budget. We will be happy to discuss our fee structure with you.
We work in pairs; for example if a large estate requires more appraisers on site, it will take a quarter of time that a single appraiser would take, but the bill/time is still the same.
Any additional consulting, deposition or testimony work is charged above and beyond the initial appraisal fee. Expenses for travel and out of pocket items are billed in addition to the appraisal fee.^Back to Top
"Tom and Ron will go out of their way to help you with your appraisal needs. Sometimes this is a very difficult time in a family member's life. I know they did for me."
Vicki L. Smith,
Citigraphics of Scottsdale, owner
What can be done to help facilitate the appraiser and the costs?
It is always best to share the following information to help facilitate expenses and time:
- What is the purpose of the report?
- What is the intended use of the appraisal?
- What is the location and items involved?
- What is the level of documentation require?
- Gather documentation, sales receipts, certificates, past appraisals, letters, and any other information you might have.
- Prepare for the appraisal: have items ready, unlocked and available especially jewelry, separate silver, stems and china; and if possible, pull furniture away from the wall.
- An appraisal that is done thoroughly and without interruption helps both the client and appraiser to perform successfully in their duties.